A recent article in Renovation Contractor magazine stated that businesses embracing email marketing enjoy 40% higher revenues on average. For most entrepreneurs, that’s a number that can’t be ignored.
Top Sharing Tool
The world of social media offers an ever-increasing variety of tools and tactics, but the simple fact is that email was the first online sharing tool, and it remains the most widely used.
While many of us use email to keep connected with family and friends, email has also proven to be a very valuable inbound marketing tool for small businesses with modest budgets.
The Money is in the List
The cornerstone of every effective inbound marketing strategy is your database of current contacts. Use social networks to funnel new users to your website or blog, then capture new leads by offering free incentives or exclusive deals. For optimum results tag and sort your contacts according to buyer profiles, matching target markets with the products and services your offer.
On average, 20% of your email database will stale-date each year, so it’s crucial to keep it current by scrubbing bounced addresses and refreshing email contacts on a regular basis.
Authenticating all email addresses will help prevent your emails from turning to spam, so it’s best to ask permission as part of the sign-in process. In Canada, that’s a best practice and the law.
Email Builds Brands
In today’s business environment, email trumps traditional communications. Archaic marketing tools like the dreaded cold call, and expensive print media and postal costs have been replaced with branded emails that are dynamic, direct and highly engaging.
When used strategically, branded emails share targeted messaging timed to reflect client profiles and user algorithms. And from a budget perspective, email is by far the best buy for your buck. It costs marginally more to distribute an email campaign to 4000 contacts, than it does to reach 400.
Tools of the Trade
Smart marketers are using engaging emails to:
- say thank you for recent work
- distribute monthly or quarterly e-newsletters
- email appointment or service reminders
- send personalized renewal notices
- promote special offers and discounts
- invite referrals and reviews on social media
Remember to keep your content engaging so your audience will stay subscribed — and even better — forward your emails to others. Always link back to relevant content on your website or blog. Use a responsive template to accommodate mobile devices, and integrate auto-responders to provide follow-up emails at preset intervals.
The Numbers Have It
Another key feature that pushes email well above traditional telemarketing and snail mail as a must-have inbound marketing tool, is that emailing platforms such as Constant Contact and MailChimp provide unprecedented user analytics. This means you can track who receives, opens and clicks on the content you’re sending out.
As a smart entrepreneur you’ll use these stats to shape and schedule follow-up campaigns to effectively engage your buyers.
Studies show that for every dollar invested in email marketing, businesses enjoy a $44 dollar return. By my math, that’s an investment worth leveraging.